Seeking to repair its damaged image, Barclays on Thursday appointed Antony Jenkins, the head of its retail and business banking division, as chief executive. Jenkins, a Brit, replaces disgraced CEO Bob Diamond, an American banker who fell on his sword in June during the fallout from the Libor rate-fixing scandal.
The appointment of Jenkins suggests that Barclays may be considering a dramatic change in strategy. Under Diamond, Barclays scaled its highly profitable, yet risky investment banking business, a sector in which Jenkins has no experience.
Jenkins reiterated Barclays' commitment to its universal-banking model, and said that Rich Ricci, the head of the firm's investment bank groomed under Diamond, would remain in his role, according to The Wall Street Journal. But it's fair to question whether Jenkins' appointment will coincide with Barclays returning its focus to the safer world of retail banking, a move that would most likely appease U.K. regulators. Many believe Barclays' i-banking focus heavily contributed to its lax regulatory culture.
While investment banking head count has plummeted over the last year, Barclays has been relatively immune to economic pressures, despite the rate fixing scandal and a separate criminal investigation into payments made between Barclays and Qatar Holding.
I-Banking head count at the world's largest banks fell nearly 6% from June 2011 through June 2012. Barclays, meanwhile, lost just 1.3% of its investment banking staff during the period, dropping from roughly 23,600 to 23,300, according Financial News.
One thing we know for sure: Barclays will undoubtedly dial back bonuses and gaudy executive salaries with Jenkins and incoming chairman David Walker, a former U.K. treasury official, at the helm.
Readers: We're taking a small hiatus to give Morning Coffee a fresh look. We'll resume distribution on September 17th, brought to you by eFinancialCareers. In the meantime, check out a few of our greatest hits.
Ten Dumb Things Said During Job Interviews
Eloquence in an Interview Is Better Than Accuracy
The Ten Worst Things to Put on Your Resume
Foot in the Door: The Finance Resume
Mortgage Hiring Spike (FINS)
Near record-low interest rates and the myriad of regulations born from the 2008 housing crisis have reinvigorated hiring in the mortgage industry. The jobs are there if you have the experience.
NFA Probe (WSJ)
The National Futures Association has ordered an external review of its operations following the collapse of Peregrine Financial Group, a futures and currency brokerage firm that the NFA was charged with regulating. The industry group is also reportedly considering withholding some staff bonuses.
We Have a Pulse (NY Times)
The U.S. economy grew by 1.7% in the second quarter, beating a Commerce Department estimate of 1.5% but falling short of the Q1 growth numbers. In short, we're moving forward…very slowly.
Compliance Jobs Growing (Bloomberg)
With traditional banking jobs hard to find, out-of-work executives have begun exploring opportunities in compliance, a sector that has grown since the implementation of the Dodd-Frank law.
Arms Race (WSJ)
The competition amongst New York's myriad of regulators and prosecutors has heated up over the last year with creation of the new State Department of Financial Services. Regulators are fighting for headlines, and it's led to an "arms race of prosecution" in the financial sector.
Citi Settles (Bloomberg)
In a not-so-quiet reminder that the fallout from the financial crisis is far from settled, Citigroup on Wednesday agreed to fork over $590 million to settle an investor lawsuit claiming the bank purposely concealed ties to risky investments.
Call it a Comeback (Financial News)
Kai Sotorp, the former head of UBS's Asia Pacific arm credited with helping to turn around the firm's Japanese business in the early 2000s, is back with UBS in the same capacity.
Buzz Around the Office
Not Gonna Do It (MSN)
Not often do you see a former U.S. president do an impersonation on camera. Even less often do you see one impersonate an actor. And never has a president impersonated an actor impersonating himself…until now.
List of the Day: Advancing at a Small Firm
Moving up the ranks at a small firm can be difficult. Here's how to pull it off.
1. If you aren't given new responsibilities, create them for yourself.
2. Build a career plan and discuss it with your boss.
3. Find a mentor.
(Source: The Daily Muse)